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crazyjizzy

[TR] Goat Creek Wall- Prime Rib 10/9/2005

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Climb: Goat Creek Wall-Prime Rib

 

Date of Climb: 10/9/2005

 

Trip Report:

My pal Lenny and I climbed this route on sunday. Not bad, but....

 

On one pitch there were eight bolts protecting a 50' fourth class slab with a 5.7 mantle in the middle, after which another bolt protects a slab that I walked up. I bypassed seven of the eight bolts. AlpineK tells me that he understands that the upper bolt is a "guide" bolts, to mark the route. What give? Sad and pathetic.

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That is rad... if i didn't waste all my money on beer and drugs, I would bolt a 3rd class "overhang". This could be the new shooting range wall!

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sweet... that IS near fun chunk! i always thought it was just goatwall...lived there for years...never touched it. sad...

 

though this wall had the sweetest ice climb looking thing cascading down it one winter...i lived in this lil cabin that when you drove out that wall was right there baaammm! with blu skies...white snow, fat crazy lookin frozen waterfall action all up on it...made me wish i climbed ice thumbs_up.gif

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i think i only skipped 4 or 5 bolts on that pitch, i guess i am a wuss.

that climb was pretty fun, very mellow. the 5.7 pitches felt harder than the 5.9 ones. thumbs_up.gifthumbs_up.gif for the nc mountain guides for leaving out a stack of topos

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Is there a topo and/or approach information for this climb anywhere? The pictures on ncmountainguides.com make it look like it could be fun...

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The topo has a pretty good approach info. The old dirt road is about 50 meters upstream from the parking area. Follow old road to a old bridge thingy. Find small trail around right side and follow it to the talus field. Grunt up that pig to the base of the rock and follow small climber trail to the base, which on the right side of a large gulley. Find the bolt to start.

Fun route. Bring lots of draws. Having two ropes doesn't help that much when going down. I would bring just one single rope.

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JZ, It didn't seem over bolted to me. I hope I'm thinking of the right climb. One thing to keep in mind is the rock is not great for pro. I seriously doubt people would climb this route at all without the bolts. Sure you can second guess a bolt or two, but considering the big picture it seems like a job well done. I certainly enjoyed the climb.

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You're right that nobody would climb that route without a lot of effort on the part of the folks setting the route. I'd also agree that most of the pitches on the route seem like they're bolted in a sensible way. However there are a couple pitches up higher where I walked away shaking my head.

 

I lead a pitch where I skipped multipul bolts and then cman lead a pitch where he skipped at least 5 bolts, one of them we both walked past. CJZ and Lenny also had the same experience.

 

I enquired about the need for all those bolts with one person involved in setting the route. I'm a little disturbed that he refered to one bolt as a, "guide bolt." In my view the guide is the topo and therefore he's saying that something like...we placed a bolt because we didn't have spray paint to mark the route.

 

In general I thought the route was pretty good, but there are a few things that are wrong with it. If this was the only route with excess bolts I probably wouldn't say anything, but the route seems to be part of a trend. Every year there seem ot be more and more routes where there are bolts near cracks or just plain too many bolts. Now it seems bolts need to be placed to mark the route.

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When I call it a guide bolt, I mean the bolt is there to guide the rope, not the climber. On some the lower angle pitches (like the first and the seventh, I think), the bolts keep the rope from being drug through loose rock and dirt since the pitches wander a little bit to the anchor. There's one of the crux's that I agree, you're actually more at risk of z-clipping than falling. But again, the presence of the higher bolt keeps the climber from heading for easier and looser terrain to the left. If you were to try to go left, you'd be raining loose death onto the head of your belayer. Ouch. I was told that this route was bolted with a new 5.9 and multi-pitch leader in mind. And I do recommend this route to anyone who is a solid 5.8 leader looking to push their standard on a multi-pitch climb. John, if Beecher didn't send you an electronic copy let me know, I have the topo scanned into a PDF.

 

If Prime Rib is too tame for you hardmen and hardwomen, I recommend the Inspiration Route (at the first pullout). This was first climbed way back when, and is printed in the first Burdo guidebook. Its received enough traffic now that you can ignore his concerns about loose rock, bring about 14 draws, and leave the gear in the car. It's much more sparsely bolted, more sustained, and has an ass-kicking final "5.9+" pitch with some excitement. I stongly recommend it to anyone who feels like they're a solid 5.9/5.10- leader. You can rap off the top with a single 60m rope. Approach - park at the first pullout (aprox 3 miles form the store), with the Goat's Beard in view. A trail is cairned across the road. At the obvious fork, head right (going left leads to Sisyphus). The trail dissappears below a gully - cross the gully, climb up a 6' step to a landing, and head towards the dead snag. The first pitch starts on the other side of the snag, and a bolt is available to anchor your belayer.

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I put up "Prime Rib" last year, with the help of Scott Johnston. Our intent was to provide an *entry-level* multi-pitch sport climb, instead of an "adventure" climb, of which there are plenty in this area. My thanks to Chris for clarifying some of the rationale for the bolting pattern we used.

My first caveat is that if you are a solid 5.9 (or harder) leader, and are looking primarily for alpine-style adventure, this is probably not the climb for you. As Chris noted, "Inspiration Route" would be more suited to this type of experience.

 

As to route specifics:

 

-I believe that the pitch taken into account as "puzzling" is the 10th, or second-to-last, pitch, which as noted, is mostly 3rd/4th class with a few moves of moderate 5th. This pitch also traverses along the top of an overhanging wall. If the second were to come off at several points on this pitch (yes even on "easy" terrain), the result would be a potential swing over the lip of the steep face below (this situation also applies to the 9th pitch as well, but the climbing there is more sustained and obviously exposed). So if this (10th) pitch were being followed by a novice, with say a conventional 20-foot runout on 4th-class climbing, and they were to misstep at the wrong point, they would potentially pitch off over the edge and be immediately put into a dire rescue situation, where moments before the seriousness of their position would be inobvious, to say the least. Hence the "guide bolts", which are optimized for the second, not the leader.

 

- At almost any point on this climb, getting off route by even as little as ten feet can be a very serious mistake, as loose rock abounds everywhere that hasn't been "swathed" by the (multi-week) cleaning process. Couple this with the winding nature of the route, the many short steps and overhangs which impair visiblity, etc., etc., and the result is that in order to have a safe climb for mutiple parties, many of whom may be inexperienced in multi-pitch routefinding, yes there will be many bolts. In fact, often too many bolts for the taste of an experienced leader used to longer runouts on say, Squamish- or Darrington quality granite, where wandering about on tricky but choss-free slabs is part of the luster of the experience. We took great pains to avoid exposing parties to rockfall generated by parties above, and part of this strategy involved putting bolts where they kept people "on route". Also, as Chris noted, the bolts on otherwise easy climbing often is necessary to keep the rope from engaging loose rock.

 

- Several of the cruxes on this climb seem to be very height-dependent, and a tall climber may find nothing harder than 5.8, and be wondering why their are bolts so closely spaced. Another, shorter, climber, for whom the (reachy) 5.9+ move is at their limit, may be glad that they won't potentially deck on the ledge 10 feet below them as they pull a steep crux. "Clip 'em or Skip 'Em" definitely applies.

If you really want to impress your climbing partner, I suppose that you could rack up only a few draws for each pitch, and earn your hardman points in that way. You would still be getting a lot more clips (and a lot cleaner rock) than when I initially reconned the route with only shoes and a chalkbag.

 

A detailed topo of this route and many others in the "Goat

Rocks/Dome/Creek Wall" area will be available in the form of my guidebook coming out in spring '07.

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Last time I was up there, you needed *two* ropes to get off the Inspiration Route -- has that changed?

For certain. We had beta from Mark Allen that a single 60m rope was sufficient. Because of some changes all four of us ended up climbing together as two two-man teams, so we were able to tie our ropes and do long 60m raps. But I watched for the mid-mark on the rope to make sure that I could come back with friends!

 

Bryan, thanks for the hard work on Prime Rib - that routes is super-fun.

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Byran and Scott did a great job establishing Prime Rib.

I think if anything is "sad and pathetic," it is when someone comes to Mazama, climbs a quality, multi-pitch route on Goat Wall, drives home and goes online to only comment that the climb is "not bad" and then gripes about how one pitch, in their opinion, is overbolted.

Anyone who has climbed on Goat Wall would recognize all the potential up there. Perhaps folks like "crazyjizzy" will put up a route soon to show us how it is done properly.

 

Paul Butler

Mazama

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On any number of occasions I've run across bolt placements that led me to wonder "what were they thinking?" Thanks to Brian for offering up some proof that they were in fact thinking. thumbs_up.gif It's somewhat remarkable for a route developer to step up to the plate to answer a disgruntled question.

 

BTW: original post in this thread is more than a year old

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Thanks for the "BTW" about the date, OW! I suppose the chances of the original poster reading all of this is slim, but at least the info is here for those that might be interested in doing the route in the future.

 

I think that the original concerns voiced were sincere, and I can certainly see why the questions arose. I certainly am not inclined to "spray" bolts (though that, I realize, is a matter of opinion) where they aren't needed by the intended users, in this case beginner-to-intermediate multi-pitch sport climbers. Certainly I plan to put in more routes on GW that fall more to the "adventure" side of the equation (in addition to those already in place), but Scott and I wanted to provide a friendly "introduction" route to the area, and from the general feedback, I reckon we succeeded. Thanks from both of us to all who have relayed their encouragement.

 

The Methow Valley was absolutely stunning today in the October sun with a fresh dusting of white!

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I think that the original concerns voiced were sincere, and I can certainly see why the questions arose.

 

Hey Big Bry,

 

Crazyjizzy is sincere, as are you.

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Sounds to me like you went through great pains to manufacture and "dumb down" a route for gym climbers...who maybe shouldn't be on a serious route with dangerous routefinding and rockfall hazrds if they can't find their own way safely? Is more bolts the right answer? How about more experience...?

 

Not really my place to say since I haven't had the chance to climb the route, just going by your description.

 

Sorry if you are offended, have fun!

cheers! bigdrink.gif

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Byran and Scott did a great job establishing Prime Rib.

I think if anything is "sad and pathetic," it is when someone comes to Mazama, climbs a quality, multi-pitch route on Goat Wall, drives home and goes online to only comment that the climb is "not bad" and then gripes about how one pitch, in their opinion, is overbolted.

Anyone who has climbed on Goat Wall would recognize all the potential up there. Perhaps folks like "crazyjizzy" will put up a route soon to show us how it is done properly.

 

Paul Butler

Mazama

 

You know Pauley; your attitude is specious and arrogant.

 

Can I discuss music with out a degree in music, or a contract and a producer? How about the war in Iraq? Should I join the military so I can voice my opinion? Do you think you own climbing? Are you some kind of thought police? This is a quasi-public forum, and climbing is a public sport. People are allowed to voice their opinion of what another does to the rocks and to the sport.

 

Is that OK with you?

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I say thumbs up to Bryan for coming here to directly answer Jizzy’s original questions about the route - as this kind of direct response from someone being targeted for criticism over bolting practices on cc.com is relatively rare.

 

You have a "right" to make your points, Mark, and you have. So too does Paul have a "right" to suggest that he didn't like Jizzy's original tone. But lets not turn this into a discussion of who is the jerk around here. We've beaten THAT dead horse plenty of times.

 

Some climbers will like Prime Rib, others will not. If the existence of this climb or others like it has great implications for climbing in Washington, those issues are probably better discussed in a separate thread because they are probably not specific to this route.

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Agreed Matt, props to Bryan about being candid about his route.

 

I have allways respected Bryan as being a stand up guy who's honest and open about his climbing motives and objectives. We use to talk frequently about some of his routes at VW when I was a front desk jockey.

 

I also agree with Markmckillop, that people have a right to express their opinion about a climb here at this virtual campfire, and we can discuss this stuff while still being respectfull.

 

While I like Bryan and respect all the work, expense, effort, and heart he's put into the development of climbing in Washington. I have to say I can't allways agree with his opinion. He once told me he though piton cracks on El Capitan should be bolted to prevent distruction of the rock (i.e. The Shield route). And he was pretty serious about that opinion. While I agree that the deteriation of aid cracks in Granite is a bad thing, and people should try to climb clean, I don't think bolting the cracks is the answer.

 

I think Bryan's description of their intention with this route along the similar thought process. That more bolts is a way to preserve the route quality, saftey, or quality of the experience.

 

Personally I disagree that the idea of creating a nice safe route for the masses is justification for adding lots of bolts to any piece of rock.

 

My current local "alpinish" climbing area is Castle Crags State Park in Northern Cali (about 1.5 hr drive from home). The routes have a reputation for being serious and not for the faint of heart, bolts are sparse, flakes are loose, routefinding is not allways obvious, and good pro is often hard won and thin. If Bryan or myself or anyone were to try to put up a route as he decribes above, it would be chopped in a heartbeat by the locals in Mt Shasta who are adimant about preserving the traditional ethic. I have much more respect for that camp.

 

There are reasons I'd like to go to Castle Crags with a power drill and put up a nice safe line that we could funnel clients up for profit. But it would not be accepted by the community, and for good reason.

 

Don't get me wrong I know BB has put up more then his share of hard testpiece routes in the WA Pass area, many of which I hope to do someday like Clean Break and The Passanger. I got much respect for that stuff.

 

Cheers! bigdrink.gif

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